A question about education

Greetings everyone,

I have some questions about education. I’m going to be a little specific about myself and my partner for the sake of clarity and perspective. However my question(s) are meant to be general about education, both within the Cardano community and the world at large.

I am writing this because, well, I am impressed by everyone involved here on the forum as well as the people who are making it happen at IOHK, Emurgo, and the CF. And I feel certain that someone within this community has thought about my questions; I’m just not finding any discussion about it. I have watched quite a few of Mr. Hoskinson’s videos and he does bring up education, but so far I’ve only heard him reference the efforts and teams that are involved in education in Africa and South America and I don’t know where else.

When I listen to Charles I understand his vision and the thought he and his team have put into this goal, not just on the technical side but on the community building side. I love the idea that there can be, through technology, a community built that actually seems to solve what the writers of the U.S. constitution and the founders of the United States had in mind and what they foresaw as the ultimate problem the republic would face, namely, who decides about money. It’s very exciting to me.

I graduated high school in 1978 and within two weeks of my graduation went to work for a computer printing company and learned how to operate and then program an IBM 360/40. After I left this job I went to work for a bank running an Amdahl computer processing daily transactions. My partner, who is the same age as myself, married an architect student and got her first computer when they bought the original Macintosh. She has since worked fairly consistently over the decades within the desktop publishing side of things. I have gotten into and out of computer based work over the decades.

For the last 10 years we have been living in a rural county in the southeast USA that has a population of 20-25,000 people. Over the years as we have gotten to know the members of our community we have been fairly surprised by the number of people (both those still working on whatever career path they have as well as those who have retired from fairly high level jobs requiring daily use of computers) who, regardless of their experience seem to have no fundamental understanding over how to operate their own personal computers. Basic stuff like copy and paste, navigating through a program interface, simply understanding what one is seeing on the screen and what is relevant apparently are pretty uncommon skills.

I do not believe this is a generational thing. Whether someone is in their 20s, 30s, 40s or on up in age, not very many people ‘get it’ when it comes to using a personal computing device. They can do what they have to, and accept what they’re doing as ‘good enuff’, not worrying about eloquence or professionalism. If you are like me at all, I’m sure you have also witnessed the slow degradation of the English language, whether it is in advertising or on cointelegraph.com or the New York Times. Not much emphasis is made any more on doing things ‘correctly’.

People understand when they are broke and when they are not broke. The more well off have a broker or a pension, but how would they truly feel about being their own banker?

Even myself, someone who is basically unintimidated by any computer I come across, found getting into crypto by going onto an exchange a little nerve-wracking the first couple of purchases. In the last month or two, I have been speaking to friends about blockchain and the opportunities I see in getting involved in this new world by actually buying some crypto. I have provided video links and links to reading material and offered to speak with them anytime they wanted to. Of about 8 people that I can recall right now, two have made steps to actually buy some. Both of them are older guys, but only one has successfully put together a small portfolio. The technical difficulties were nearly insurmountable simply because neither had modern and/or functioning smart phones/personal computers.

My patience was greatly tested :flushed: going through this process with them and I am grateful I have learned to be a little less judgmental as I’ve gotten older.

So here is my point to all of this: 1,000,000,000 people.
One billion.
That is the goal. And I am glad that it is the goal.
However, our zip code here has slightly less than 1200 addresses. I cannot in any way fathom bringing even a modest fraction of the people in my community, let alone 171 (1 out of 7) into this way of thinking let alone actually getting them to buy Bitcoin which at least some of them have heard of, let alone Cardano.

The reason I’ve written all of this was catalyzed by the post Rick McCracken made where he introduced the draft of a new roadmap for the Cardano Foundation. I applaud the work and have followed the comments and discussion in that thread. Earlier today I downloaded Telegram and intend to read through the voluminous discussion going on there about the roadmap. Maybe I’ll even chip in a thought or two if it seems helpful.

My questions (finally) are these: where is education in the roadmap? Shouldn’t that be included? Of the people I personally know right now, I would say less than ten could follow any discussion about buying crypto let alone the intricacies of Cardano and its’ development.

I bring this up because I know what it is like to live in a bubble. Just like stoners like to tell themselves that everyone smokes weed, computer people tend to think everyone knows how to do stuff on their computer.

Neither statement is nearly as true as the people who think so.

I feel it is kind of a big deal to think about this because we are talking about a huge paradigm shift in money and how humans relate to it.

And I don’t know about y’all, but where I’m from, people get funny about money.

The only other cryptocurrency I own besides Cardano is Elrond. The reason I own Elrond is the same reason I own ADA, their CEO looks at the world and sees the same shit me and Charles Hoskinson do. Presumably you all do too. And both of these guys have the money and the drive and the knowledge and the wherewithal to actually build these huge enterprises to change this shitty situation we all find ourselves in.

I love them both because they are putting it all out there for all of us because, what alternative is there? I have never found it to be a satisfying thought to see the state of our world and then simply shrug and say, oh well… I am so grateful they seem to feel the same way.

The thing Benjamin Mincu said that got me was that his goal is also 1 billion people in the Elrond community, and he wants it to be simple enough for his/your/my grandmother.

And I appreciate that. Because from what I can tell in my own community, it’s going to have to be that simple for any of the people I’ve grown close to over these last few years to actually take part, buy the coin, get involved in governance, take responsibility for their own lives and communities.

1 billion people.
One out of every seven people you and I know.

I would like to see the beginnings of that included in the roadmap. I do not mean this to be a criticism of the roadmap as I’ve understood it so far. I applaud everyone’s efforts who have gotten involved. The issues being discussed are critical for the successful decentralization of the Cardano blockchain.

But in the months that I have been studying all of these things, I am not seeing this fundamental issue of the common ignorance of the vast majority of our so-called ‘First World’ country being addressed.

And to achieve the goal, at some point it seems to me that it will need to be addressed.

I may have typed for the last hour because I myself have been too ignorant to actually find the link that would answer my questions. If so, I would appreciate anybody answering me with that link that addresses my concern. If there is not one, I would appreciate any discussion with others who have also found it difficult to share, simply because people don’t understand what you are talking about.

If you’ve read all of this, thank you. I appreciate your time.


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For what it’s worth, which might not be much because I only skimmed that long post, here’s my take: in the future most people will use crypto without being aware of it. They will not trade or hold as we do, will not see themselves as being their own bankers. Instead they’ll be offered much more user friendly options, apparently quite similar to current financial arrangements. But using crypto under the hood, these will be much, much more efficient, diverse and flexible. So to sum up, IMO crypto is not really for the mass market retail sector (as well as not currently ready for it!).

Thanks for responding Rob.

I’ve heard this perspective from YT prognosticators and some of the analysts who are fans of crypto.

Personally, although I get it and understand this is how things are, or have been, it leaves my inner self, the part of me that is where the extremes of socialism and libertarianism meet - the revolutionary part of me, with a sour taste in my mouth.

I’ve watched this year as Grayscale Bitcoin Trust has bought up more BTC than was being mined. From what I could tell, they’re packing 20% on top of their price. And you can say this is free enterprise and markets and all of that stuff, but really, this seems to me to be the same old same old…

It has never sounded to me like Satoshi or Charles or anyone who was into crypto at or near the beginning was doing all of that work and thought for these ends.

By the time it gets to people who are not technologically savvy there will be so much bloat and control, what is actually going to feel different to the common person? Who are the profits really going to benefit? The rich? I thought they were already doing ok. The technological gee-whizness of it? Is that the fun part?

I remember when the Intel 486 chip started coming out in the early 90s and I realized I could actually work with photographs on a computer! Video! I spent the next 15 years being so excited for the next machine and more ram and better operating systems. The reality was the tools got better but the speed never really felt faster. Operating systems get more and more bloated and the actual doing of it is still frustrating and loaded with layers of corporate sludge. You can buy and build your own super machine but it’s still 10-20 grand depending on your hobbies to get a machine that actually screams.

What got me into crypto was this idea of decentralization, the chance for people to take back what we’ve lost over the last 100 years and uncouple from the corruptness and corporate/government bloat of our ‘first world’ systems.

I deeply appreciate Charles’ larger goal of providing identity and banking to third world populations. But thinking critically, western nations tag newborns like cattle at birth with a SSN or its’ equivalent.

We don’t have our own identity in this larger world, we have one imprinted upon us and are indoctrinated that it is real with no real opportunity to self-determine or even examine why this is so.

Is that really what we want to offer the third world? Is that systemic tagging really going to help them?

If that’s it, I don’t care if it’s done on a blockchain or on legacy systems, it’s the same thing.

And I guess this was the point to my questions in the original post, if we can empower and liberate people in the third world countries, can’t we do it for people in the first world? Can’t we put a little thought and resources and marketing/education into where this all began?

There’s a stanza in a Bob Dylan song -

My back is to the sun, because the light is so intense,
I can see what everybody in the world is up against…

Some people learn in an autodidactic way, most need to be taught. When you look at Americans, there’s a huge amount of debt and multiple jobs to sustain the debt and the bills and the insurance and they don’t even know how they got there.

Maybe change can only happen incrementally and we should just trust that technology will, at the end of the day, be that liberating factor. That feels like progress on a geologic scale, and maybe it happens to everyones benefit but this momentum shift by traditional investment vehicles into crypto suggests that maybe it doesn’t.

I know some of you are from elsewhere in the world and I probably sound like a cat yowling because the milk isn’t fresh enough.

I guess I would just like to know that someone somewhere is going to develop Dapps and Defi for the maid, the hamburger flipper, the office worker. And then actually let those people know about it.

Maybe this wall of words is boring and I’m not being realistic. But I love rhetoric and deeper thinking.

My hope would be that all of the rhetoric and deeper thinking actually lead somewhere different. I’ve written all of this here on this forum because Cardano is the only organization where I’ve felt like these issues could be raised.

I’ll let it be for now with thanks for anyone reading these thoughts.

Hello archangelbob. The fifth maybe? Just kidding. =)

As RobJf, I just glanced at your first post, and will say something about it.

Cryptocurrencies will be of use in the near future just as you use MBWay in Portugal.
Wich is just sending someone a code via the app, with wich you insert in the MB machine and you can withdraw the amount that the first person, the sender, acquiesced.

Bottom line, using a crypto-wallet and scanning a QR code isn’t that farfetched, IMHO, for anyone being born after the 50’s.

And keep in mind that the world on we are living is getting easier as we write!

Best regards!

EDIT: Just, again, glanced on your response to RobJf. Watch this documentary, if you will:
“Capital: In the 21st Century”

Thomas Piketty, along with the book on wich the doc was based, has a TedTalk on the topic. Either is great. Follow that up with Yanis Varoufakis TedTalk, “Capitalism will eat Democracy”.

You will be as good as anyone, who gets that, for the following 5/10 years, tops. Status quo is changing fast, predictions are obsolete.

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I’m an idealist too, as a Buddhist I believe that our compassion for our fellow creatures benefits both us and them, and where it’s lacking it can be developed. But it’s hearts and minds that need to change. Crypto and blockchain IMO can only help indirectly in the sense that when you’re comfortable materially then you have the leisure to tend to hearts and minds.

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Thank you for your response jpsrrv!
:slight_smile: yeah, the name. I’ve thought about that name in a lot of contexts - is it a good name for a band? is Bob just a 2nd or 3rd string archangel? or the other direction - a special forces angel? Mostly I just like the irony of an angel named Bob.

I did watch the documentary as well as the Yanis talk. I do like him, ever since he was fighting to keep Greece from mortgaging the Parthenon.

With the documentary, well, most of the time I feel like economists talk about economies as if they are some sort of evolving animal. To me, since I first read Marx, I’ve always felt it was kind of obvious that they are arbitrary creations. That the things done economically are intentional. I still give that thought a lot of weight, but this year I’ve been looking at Fibonacci based technical analysis and this thing called the Wyckoff method. That price movements in markets have patterns created by people with no direct involvement with one another is really interesting. And then the models kind of go limp when you see people, in groups or just big whales, manipulating things. It’s weird!

I live in a forested area and think about Fibonacci numbers and patterns quite a bit. I’ve started to wonder if it was possible to develop software or something to analyze the patterns of an individual’s life in the same way Fibonacci sequences seems to lay bare the patterns of something like flower petals or Bitcoin’s price history. I find all of that to be beautiful stuff.

If you don’t know Anthony Pompliano, I would suggest a video he made a couple of months ago titled, “What is Bitcoin and why is it important”. The metaphor he uses for describing blockchains has really been helpful when I’ve spoken with friends about it. The why is it important half is really clear and very helpful also.

Thanks again.

I hear ya Rob.

Since I was 30 I’ve lived mostly on the fringes of the system, only really engaging in it when I felt like I had to. For me it was a Buddhist way to go in the sense that karma is only directing your life when you are on the karmic wheel. But the true goal was to step off of the wheel.

I’ve encountered varying degrees of horror when I’ve tried to describe that to people. People seem to feel we are obligated to support the systems we have, and stepping out of them is some sort of betrayal. I’m not sure to whom.

But this is why Cardano specifically and blockchain in general was so nice to learn about. Because this looks like a great way to step off of the karmic wheels we’ve all been living in, particularly the way Charles describes it.

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